We all have it... stuff... everywhere! We entered this world with absolutely nothing but the bodies we were born in and we leave it with a large footprint of history, stories, and things we've collected our whole lives. Our first homes are typically small, starting out with the essentials, and as we grow older & build our families, we collect more & more, creating the need for bigger and bigger homes. Eventually, if we haven't made it a point to purge as we took new things into our homes, we end up with a mound of things that are owning us vs. us owning them.
Finding new homes for our things we've decided to part with is not easy, especially when downsizing a large home. The first step is knowing your options. Here are some places where you can donate your unwanted belongings (links are for Polk County/Central Florida area):
Inspired by SCORE's American Small Business Championship and SCORE Awards, this blog post, combined with my contest entry, takes you inside my company to learn what exactly it is that my services do for the local community and its residents.
It's the same thing every year. January 1st rolls around and a lot of us have New Year's resolutions - those of us who haven't given up completely on them! Why are new year's resolutions so hard to keep? This question can have so many answers. Maybe the resolution was unrealistic; maybe something affected your ability to make good on it; maybe something else more important came along.
A Digital Marketing company, iQuanti, recently pulled data from Google to find the most popular New Year's resolutions. Here is what they found:
All your life, you've managed a household; from cleaning and cooking to paying the bills and maintaining your home. As you age, you notice it's not as easy as it used to be. Things tend to pile up- LOTS of things! Clutter in your home can be dangerous at any age, but it is especially for those who are aging, as this clutter can be a trip hazard, and can even cause health problems if there are unsanitary conditions. Let's take a walk through the house to learn how some simple organization can make life a whole lot easier, enjoyable, and safe for the aging population...
Decades of treasures, from china to knick-knacks and collectibles to furniture, adorn the walls and floors of the home you've lived in for the last 10, 20, 40, or 50+ years. When you're downsizing into a smaller home or apartment, there is simply not enough space to store it all. And, as hard it is to let these things go, you've realized these are only things. You've enjoyed them and now it is time to allow someone else to enjoy them, so that you can enjoy your new home with the pieces that mean the most to you. Now, you wonder, how do I get rid of all this stuff?! There is no easy answer to that question, as each person's situation is completely different, but here are a few standard options:
It's no secret - moving is stressful! First of all, there is organizing it all! Then there is packing, discarding, cleaning, and paperwork. If you don't keep it all together - everything you need for your move to be organized - then there is also constant searching, questioning, and unpreparedness. If you found this post, I imagine being unprepared is the last thing you intend on being, so here is what you should have in your move notebook...
"I would like to bring my 10' x 5' dining room table to my new apartment home if it will fit."
I have heard this at least a few times since becoming a Senior Move Manager® early this year. Meet my husband and Business Operations Manager, Danny Ramer. In the picture above, you see him measuring 10 feet out from the dining room wall to show where the dining room table described above would be if it were flush with the wall. As you can see, it would come out to the middle of the hallway - not ideal in a smaller living space.
Imagine not having measured the new space, paying to have the table moved, only getting it there to find out it is not going to work out. Now what?!
Here are some other things to keep in mind when downsizing and planning your space:
Downsizing can be a daunting task. You've lived in your home for upwards of 20, 30, 40, or 50+ years. You've collected so much over the years. You know you are moving into a smaller space; one that doesn't have quite the upkeep or maintenance, but you are asking yourself how you can downsize your belongings and is it possible to just do it after you've moved it all and finally have the time.
Since becoming a Certified Senior Move Manager® and completing 56 senior move management projects since January 2016, I've experienced an array of different scenarios. Some of my clients have downsized and moved multiple times in their retirement; others have never downsized before and can't fathom the idea of going through each and every item, making decisions on what to keep and what to let go of. In either case, I recommend making those decisions before your move vs. after for the following reasons:
From start to finish, a move for a senior can be an overwhelming process... for the senior, and for the family. Oftentimes, the family is not capable of managing this process, as they live out of the area, or they have demanding careers. There are many emotional and physical aspects of relocation and/or "aging in place." Senior Move Managers® minimize the chaos and stress associated with moving by addressing these aspects, creating and executing a seamless action plan that is customized to the client's needs.
Specific services vary, but most Senior Move Managers® can help with some of the following:
After the first months of sleepless nights, and 4 years of taking care of this sweet (sometimes ;)) baby boy, I have put together this list of things to organize when you're expecting, so you can better prepare...
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Below are links to products and resources that I believe in, and/or use and love. Purchasing by way of these links will help support my business and my family, as to no additional charge to you, they pay me a percentage of the sale... thank you!!
I am BIG fan of Professional Organizing expert Lisa Woodruff with Organize365. Get 10% off any of her ETSY products with the coupon code NICOLE. Here are a few of my favorite products of hers: